jamie goode's wine blog: Bizarre Mondavi campaign?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Bizarre Mondavi campaign?

Snapped at Waterloo Station this morning: Mondavi Woodbridge have started a new poster campaign in the UK with what seems a rather bizarre message.

The two posters I have seen so far are the one above, where a hippy is playing guitar in a vineyard (a barred G chord to be precise), and another where a tour group in the winery is doing yoga. The message is 'California, but not that California", with the implication being that in the past California has been associated with hippies and alternative lifestyle, and that Mondavi has nothing to do with this.

It seems barmy to me. Who would you rather have make your wine? Hippies, surf dudes and creative types, or suits, bean counters and chemical engineers?

What is more appealing? Californian alternative culture as portrayed in these adverts (albeit here as a bad thing), or the California of materialistic conspicuous consumers ambitious to climb the social ladder and make loads of money, but little else? Am I the only one who thinks Mondavi Woodbridge are making a mistake with this campaign message?

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At 1:39 AM, Anonymous colmanstephenson said...

Having recently moved from the UK to San Francisco, I can report that Napa contains precisely no hippies. Its got to be the most expensive farmland on the planet.

And frankly the wine from Sonoma and further North in Washington and Oregon tends to me much more interesting. And the winemakers tend to be of more hippyish tendencies. Even biodynamism has hit shows up.

At 6:27 AM, Anonymous Robert said...

I think it's pretty smart actually: isn't it trying to do the opposite of what it says? The "real" message is the picture without words - bottle of wine with hippie in vineyard...The words are more like: "we know you don't really think of Cal as hippie-heaven any more but we'd like to remind you of that idea - so here's a picture - but don't worry we're not totally hippie ourselves - the wine is still made with "new world" discipline..."

At 6:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Three cheers for naming the chord!
Having also just moved to Napa (but from the Midwestern State of Illinois) I have bumped elbows with a number of, and am one who, wore long hair and played bar chords 'round the campfire. I think this area has grown up, as hippies are want to do when there is more than a few pennies in the checking account. I also see the grown hippies using their resources for good in such ways as solar energy and biodynamics (the latter b/c of the non-conventional, pro-earth & nature-in-balance effects...not the voodoo connotations it brings). And there is some of that going on here. So sure, there may be a BMW's and Bentley's up and down HWY 29 but the fundamental principals of "hippy" can be seen by those that are the ones doing, not investing, in this valley.

At 8:16 AM, Blogger bsmith said...

I agree with you Jamie, I think it is a huge misjudgement.

At 10:05 AM, Blogger Robert McIntosh said...

A bit like the irony (for those in the know) of the Gallo posters that I think are still around:

"Try to use the words 'Long Time No See' as little as possible" - Gallo Together is Better

... for a family where certain members wouldn't talk to each other for decades!!


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